• Jun 21st 2009 at 2:31PM
  • 4
Nissan EV-02 prototype - click above for high res image gallery

Earlier this year, Nissan applied for low interest loans under the Department of Energy Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing incentive Program. In order to qualify for those loans, Nissan would have to use it to build something in the U.S. It now appears that if Nissan gets the loan it will put in a line to build electric vehicles at its Smyrna, Tennessee assembly plant. The line, which is expected to have a capacity of 50-100,000 units annually, could be up and running by 2012.

Automotive Energy Supply Company, the Nissan-NEC battery joint venture, also plans to set up shop in Smyrna. Initial production of both batteries and electric cars will start in Japan in 2010. Reuters is reporting that Nissan is expecting to get approval for a loan of $1 billion for the assembly and battery projects.

[Source: Reuters]
Photos Copyright ©2009 Sam Abuelsamid / Weblogs, Inc.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      The alternative energy revolution can be expected to reasonably expand local content - that is, amount of value addition from the location where the products will be used.

      This will be good for countries such as America and western Europe that have seen many of their jobs outsourced to low-wage countries like India.

      The example of Nissan setting up plants in the US is an example, though not the best. Some good examples of increasing local jobs will be: solar panel installations, retrofitting homes to make them more green, wind turbine maintenance, retooling the entire electricity grid...just imagine the amount of labour that will be required for these. And these will necessarily need to be local labour.

      Alternative energy thus has the potential to benefit the world in more ways than just environmental health!

      NS @ Alternative Energy Profits - http://www.altprofits.com/blog
      • 8 Months Ago

      I've been wondering, whether electric cars are a realistic choice in cold cities ? Can the batteries take it and what about heating the car?
        • 8 Months Ago
        The new generation of batteries can take it, at least down to -30C or so. There might be some loss of power density at lower temperatures, but you're probably not going to be driving like Mario Andretti at those temperatures anyway.

        The problem of cabin heating has in large part not been addressed, though there are several moderate cost solutions.
        One is an electrically driven heat pump (just run the AC system in reverse, though having the heat source be the motor or PEU would be better than just raw air).
        Another solution which makes EV purists cringe is a small kerosene heater, which is not as bad as it sounds, because unlike an ICE, if what you want is heat, you can burn stuff at 90% efficiency (ie, lose very little heat our your exhaust). This is what Solectria did with success 10 years ago. The only Force owner I know reported using about a gallon of kerosene a year for heat (in Boston).
        • 8 Months Ago
        This is actually one of the big questions that will need to be addressed. So far, what we've been getting are the manufacturer's estimates of range, but not too much in terms of real-world driving under a variety of conditions.

        I forwarded 2 links to this blog of tests of the i-MiEV in the UK during the past winter. In each case, the testers, driving normally, would have only gotten 35-45 miles on a full charge with heater, lights and radio on. UK winters are mild compared to the northern US and Canada, for sure. Mitsubishi claims 112 miles on a charge.

        Living in New England myself, range during the period from Oct. through April could be a deal-breaker if it's less than half the range under optimal conditions.
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